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Pre-Camp 53 Roster Prediction

I know it's early for 53 projections but I couldn't help myself after the draft. But these predictions are fun . A shame we can only 53 man can be on the roster. The 53 man roster should be expanded to 57. Overall this was a very good draft. We plugged cracks (because we had no gaping holes), provided needed depth, and replenished for the future. I'm pretty shocked, but quite stoked that we came away with so many picks. I thought we'd trade up a few times, but honestly, I really didn't want us to. As I stated in my first mock I preferred us to pick all 11 picks – we came away with 12. So, this is my early view of our 53 man roster and 46 game roster.

Italicized makes the 53 only.

QB – 3
Colin Kaepernick
Blaine Gabbert
Kory Faulkner

Yes, I have Faulkner beating out Bethel-Thomas.

RB – 4
Frank Gore
Kendall Hunter
Marcus Lattimore
Carlos Hyde

I think LMJ will be either cut or traded. Drafting Carlos Hyde in the 2nd and Bruce Ellington (a speedy WR with serious return ability) spoke loud volumes to me about how JH & Co. view the direction of our RB position. I just don't get the impression that the coaching staff really even thought LMJ even fit into what JH & Co. want to do offensively. This will be a transition year for our backfield. Just my prediction but I see Gore as the "feature" back only on paper. I think Hunter, Lattimore, and Hyde will probably get about 80-90% of the total carries, with Lattimore probably getting 50% of the total number of carries (but Hunter will have a lot to say about that). My bet is that Gore retires after this season. But that's just how I see it anyway.

FB – 2
Bruce Miller
Will Tukuafu
*Trey Millard (will be on IR)

TE – 2
Vernon Davis
Vance McDonald

Going forward, Trey Millard adds way more value to the roster so I don't think G. Celek will make it this season.

WR – 5
Anquan Boldin
Michael Crabtree
Stevie Johnson
Quinton Patton
Bruce Ellington

I would love for us to carry 6, but it won't happen. Brandon Lloyd, Jon Baldwin, Chuck Jacobs will be cut. I don't think David Reed and Devon Wylie will be PS eligible so they'll be out as well. (Zoners are more than welcome to correct me on that if I'm wrong.) I honestly think we could keep 6, but I doubt it (that doubt isn't a strong doubt though). If we keep 6 look out for Brandon Lloyd or DeMarco Sampson. Also, I like Quinton Patton, but he had better be really careful here. This team is WAY too close this season, so I seriously doubt that JH & Co. are gonna be in any mood for patients for lack of production from this position. Drafting Bruce Ellington (not to mention acquiring Stevie Johnson) should've sent a real message to Patton. If Patton don't learn to run routs and catch on both sides of the field we could see a lot of Bruce Ellington, and early too.

OT – 3
Joe Staley
Anthony Davis
Jonathan Martin

OG – 4
Mike Iupati
Alex Boone
Joe Looney
Brandon Thomas (can play OT)

I think Adam Snyder and Ryan Seymour will be out, just too much young talent (see Brandon Thomas) for them to make this 53.

C – 2
Daniel Kilgore
Marcus Martin

Marcus Martin is gonna REALLY push Kilgore, and I would not at all be surprised to see him beat him our all together.

DE – 4
Justin Smith
Ray McDonald
Tank Carradine
Quinton Dial/Tony Jerrod-Eddie
*Kaleb Ramsey (I think they'll find a way to stash him on IR given his durability concerns)

This D-line is loaded!! I think we will see the last of Demarcus Dobbs on this roster. I know he signed his tender but I just cannot see where he'll fit, given that we've drafted a truer FB and yet two more along the D-line. I predict Quinton Dial and Tony Jerrod-Eddie to really battle for playing time; that's a camp battle I'm salivating for. But the looser of that battle will be out, and that cut will be painful. For now imma pencil in Dial to edge him out on the 53. Kaleb Ramsey is injury prone, so I think JH & Co. will find a reason to stash him on IR, because he WILL NOT last on the PS. Don't think we will have any room for Lawrence Okoye, but I think he'll clear waivers and brought back to the PS for further development.

NT – 2
Ian Williams
Glenn Dorsey

Just a hunch but I see Ian Williams regaining his starting spot at some point this season.

OLB – 4
Ahmad Brooks
Corey Lemonier
Dan Skuta
Aaron Lynch
*Morgan Breslin (will be stashed on IR)
*Aldon Smith (There will be a suspension coming for Aldon)

If Aldon isn't suspended I expect Dan Skuta to cut be a surprise last day roster cut, especially if Aaron Lynch shows any promise at all. Corey Lemonier will edge out Skuta for the other edge rusher.

ILB – 4
Patrick Willis
Michael Wilhoite
Chris Borland
*Navarro Bowman (PUP)
Shane Skov

I couldn't believe that we drafted Borland over Skov and that Skov didn't even get drafted at all. I thought Skov was better than Borland; I had us drafting skov. But I can understand the pick. Borland has Zach Thomas written all over him. But, we won't be able to hide Skov on the PS, so I see us finding space for him. I think Darius Fleming and Nick Moody gets the ax this season. Wilhoite will be the penciled in starter beside Willis. But I don't think that's rock solid. He'll have to earn it, and keep it until Bowman returns. Depending on how the roster looks by then we could lose Skov when Bowman returns. Hopefully we find space elsewhere or find a reason to stash him on IR.

CB – 5
Chris Culliver
Tramaine Brock
Jimmie Ward
Chris Cook/Eric Wright
Dontae Johnson
*Keith Reaser (will be stashed on IR, all season)

Out: Perrish Cox, Daryl Morris, and Chris Cook or Eric Wright. For sure this will be the most exciting position to watch going forward. I think it's safe to say that Cully and Brock will be the starters. I cannot see Jimmie Ward as a safety, at least not yet. He'll be groomed to take over the FS spot in the future. But for now he'll be THE go to slot CB. We're in nickel most of the time, so there's no way on earth that Ward will be kept off the field in nickel packages. This don't bode well for Cook and Wright as one will be out (or be a recipient of JH's usage of the IR). I see Dontae Johnson as mostly a solid backup CB and ST guy.

S – 4
Eric Reid
Antoine Bethea
CJ Spillman
Craig Dahl

K – 1
Phil Dawson

P – 1
Andy Lee

Colton Schmidt will be just a camp leg.

LS – 1
Kevin McDermott

ST – 2
Kassim Osgood, Bubba Ventrone

Practice Squad
Jewel Hampton
Asante Cleveland
Lawrence Okoye (will be brought back after clearing waivers)
Kenneth Acker
DJ Campbell
Mike Purcell (won't last on PS)
DeMarco Sampson
Luke Marquardt (won't last on PS)

Other Cuts
Al Netter
Carter Bykowski (could be brought back)
Dax Swanson (could be brought back)
Derek Carrier


Thoughts. . . .
It's a good thing I read the entire post. At first I thought you had Kasim Osgood among your cuts lol. Maybe I'm missing something, but I'm counting 52 guys. Either way, on the offensive side of the ball, I believe I agree with all of the predictions. I believe that Brandon Thomas will be redshirted so that gives us one more spot. I would like to see Brandon Lloyd make it, but in all honesty, with 3 vets out there (Boldin, Crabtree, and Stevie Johnson now), he is going to have to dominate in order to justify keeping him on the roster and taking away opportunities from Quinton Patton and Bruce Ellington. I really would've hoped that we could've traded LaMichael James so we can get some type of compensation. I'm still holding out hope that maybe we can move him for a 7th in 2015.

On defense, there are some problems. With how Tony Jerod-Eddie performed last year, he is a key backup that can start in the event of injury. Unless he has a terrible camp, he's on the squad. I see five defensive lineman this year (McDonald, Smith, Carradine, TJE, and Dial who will play the role of Ricky Jean Francois, backing up every position on the line). No arguments with your ILB picks. At OLB, that Dan Skuta cut hurts. He's too good a ST performer and can actually play their position. He stays. I'd be totally shocked if Chris Cook makes it over Eric Wright. Eric Wright actually has looked good on an NFL level and I'd feel comfortable with him as a starter if someone went down. He also gives us another option at the slot. Morris has too much potential to be let go now. Unfortunately, I do think Perrish Cox is done here. It's looking like Dontae Johnson is being penciled in as a corner, but I wish the tackling ability was better so he could be trusted to backup at safety along with CJ Spillman and push Craig Dahl off the roster. Either that, or Bubba Ventrone can step in. Regardless, if we have to play Dahl at safety anyway, we're screwed regardless, so we may as well cut him.

But this is going to be interesting and there will be some tough cuts.
  • rum53
  • Veteran
  • Posts: 762
Brandon Thomas tore his acl in a pre-draft workout for the saints. He will be on the IR next season.
Looks good. I'd just move Kory Faulker to the practice squad, losing Jewel Hampton. The team will probably only carry two QB's on the active roster.

Then, re-add your favorite CB or DE.

I think you made a good call cutting Brandon Lloyd, only because if the 49ers get in injury trouble at the position again, they should be safe in being able to call Lloyd back and adding him back to the 53. There's a chance another team will try to do the same if someone gets injured, but who really knows how good Lloyd is at this point anyway.

Same with Cox. The Niners played that game last year... releasing Cox and then bringing him back when they needed him. So that seems right.

Good analysis though.
Originally posted by LifelongNiner:
It's a good thing I read the entire post. At first I thought you had Kasim Osgood among your cuts lol. Maybe I'm missing something, but I'm counting 52 guys. Either way, on the offensive side of the ball, I believe I agree with all of the predictions. I believe that Brandon Thomas will be redshirted so that gives us one more spot. I would like to see Brandon Lloyd make it, but in all honesty, with 3 vets out there (Boldin, Crabtree, and Stevie Johnson now), he is going to have to dominate in order to justify keeping him on the roster and taking away opportunities from Quinton Patton and Bruce Ellington. I really would've hoped that we could've traded LaMichael James so we can get some type of compensation. I'm still holding out hope that maybe we can move him for a 7th in 2015.

On defense, there are some problems. With how Tony Jerod-Eddie performed last year, he is a key backup that can start in the event of injury. Unless he has a terrible camp, he's on the squad. I see five defensive lineman this year (McDonald, Smith, Carradine, TJE, and Dial who will play the role of Ricky Jean Francois, backing up every position on the line). No arguments with your ILB picks. At OLB, that Dan Skuta cut hurts. He's too good a ST performer and can actually play their position. He stays. I'd be totally shocked if Chris Cook makes it over Eric Wright. Eric Wright actually has looked good on an NFL level and I'd feel comfortable with him as a starter if someone went down. He also gives us another option at the slot. Morris has too much potential to be let go now. Unfortunately, I do think Perrish Cox is done here. It's looking like Dontae Johnson is being penciled in as a corner, but I wish the tackling ability was better so he could be trusted to backup at safety along with CJ Spillman and push Craig Dahl off the roster. Either that, or Bubba Ventrone can step in. Regardless, if we have to play Dahl at safety anyway, we're screwed regardless, so we may as well cut him.

But this is going to be interesting and there will be some tough cuts.
I recounted - twice - and I still got 53.

I see you point about Tony Jerod-Eddie. But I'm resting on who/the positions we drafted. At his position we have (three of whom are locks):
J. Smith (lock)
R. McDonald (lock)
T. Carradine (lock)
Jerrod-Eddie
Q. Dial
L. Okoye
D. Dobbs
K. Ramsey (just drafted, with injury issues)
I don't see us keeping more than 4 guys at this position. I highly doubt we cut a buy we just drafted (Ramsey). I don't see Okoye having a real shot at the 53. That leaves Jerrod-Eddie, Dial, and Dobbs to fight for one spot. Dial was redshirted, so he'll get all kinds of opportunity to show. We know what we have with Dobbs, and I can't say it better than Jerrod-Eddie.

I agree that a Skuta cut would hurt, but again, look at what we drafted. Unless we keep 5 OLB's (or someone is hurt) a Skuta cut, though painful, will happen. Now, there's a good chance Lynch could completely bomb out, in which case Skuta makes it and Lynch is put on the PS safely. However, IMHO Lynch will show some promise. Plus, if Aldon is suspended (like I think he will) I cannot imagine Lemonier not starting this season given what he showed last season.

I'd be totally shocked if Cook beat out Wright as well. But I see JH & Co. giving him every opportunity to compete for a spot.

As for Morris, that, again will be a numbers game. I see us keeping 5 CB's. Cully, Brock, Ward, and Johnson are locks. You think Morris would make it over Cook, Wright, or even Cox for that last spot? I know he has a lot of potential, but let us not forget, we had to let another promising CB go last season as well to the Cheifs, a guy who I thought should have made the team but didn't due to simple math.

And I agree that Dahl will be the only crack in our roster, assuming no injuries. But I think he makes it. In a pinch he can play SS.

Look, the rule is 53, so we cannot keep everyone. There's gonna be some painful cuts. So I won't envy JH when that time comes.
One thing of note is we still dont know if Aaron Lynch is going to be playing OLB or DE.
Originally posted by rum53:
Brandon Thomas tore his acl in a pre-draft workout for the saints. He will be on the IR next season.
I'm fully aware of that and I forgot to note that I think he'll be placed on the IR. But I honestly think JH & Co. is gonna see how things play out at other positions. Bowman will be back, so I think they'll sit on that roster spot and "fill" it for Bowman's return. IMHO
Originally posted by NickSh49:
Looks good. I'd just move Kory Faulker to the practice squad, losing Jewel Hampton. The team will probably only carry two QB's on the active roster.

Then, re-add your favorite CB or DE.

I think you made a good call cutting Brandon Lloyd, only because if the 49ers get in injury trouble at the position again, they should be safe in being able to call Lloyd back and adding him back to the 53. There's a chance another team will try to do the same if someone gets injured, but who really knows how good Lloyd is at this point anyway.

Same with Cox. The Niners played that game last year... releasing Cox and then bringing him back when they needed him. So that seems right.

Good analysis though.
Trust me, I went back and forth on keeping 2 or 3 QB's. But I just don't trust Gabbert as the sole backup to Kaep. Plus, I honestly don't think Faulkner will be safe on the PS. JH wasn't the only coaching staff eying him.
Nice but no way in heck a Harbaugh team will carry just 2 Tight ends.
Not sure Ventrone and Osgood are safe.
I can see those spots used for rookie development.
Originally posted by sf_nicoya:
One thing of note is we still dont know if Aaron Lynch is going to be playing OLB or DE.
He's 6-5, 249lbs. Trust me, he's gonna be an OLB on this team. JH & Co. aren't gonna ask him to gain 40lbs to play DE. Besides, we're pretty stacked along the D-line. Outside of Lemonier (6-3, 255lbs BTW) Lynch and Skuta are all we have at the other OLB spot.
Originally posted by kronik:
Nice but no way in heck a Harbaugh team will carry just 2 Tight ends.
OK, so how do we harry 3 TE's?
The reason you like Skov is you watch Bay Area football. You are Bay Area centric. You have never even see Borland play. He's Zach Thomas. He's clearly better and more instinctive than Skov. It's not close. Borland is much better. People complain about his size. He's 5'11 1/2" 248 lbs. Singletary was 6'0" 250 lbs. and one of the best LB's in history. So we are talking about 1/2 inch and 2 lbs....... He's plenty big enough to play.
Originally posted by OKC49erFan:
Not sure Ventrone and Osgood are safe.
I can see those spots used for rookie development.
You'd have an argument - maybe - with Ventrone. But Osgood? No way in hell he gets cut! Maybe next season after that, yes, rookie development. But not this season, not when we're so close to a SB, where ST could mean the difference of winning and loosing.
Originally posted by SanDiego49er:
The reason you like Skov is you watch Bay Area football. You are Bay Area centric. You have never even see Borland play. He's Zach Thomas. He's clearly better and more instinctive than Skov. It's not close. Borland is much better. People complain about his size. He's 5'11 1/2" 248 lbs. Singletary was 6'0" 250 lbs. and one of the best LB's in history. So we are talking about 1/2 inch and 2 lbs....... He's plenty big enough to play.
Clearly, you didn't read the full post :

. . . .But I can understand the pick. Borland has Zach Thomas written all over him. But, we won't be able to hide Skov on the PS, so I see us finding space for him. . . . .
And, if you look, I have Borland #3 on the depth chart at ILB because I trust JH & Co. over myself in this regard. I wasn't a critic of Borland for his physical measurables. I just thought Skov was better, that's all.

Edit:
BTW, as you can tell I live in Chicago (who drafted a guy I like in Kyle Fuller). I don't get to see much, if any, Bay Area Football. And by me working so much, not to mention coaching football, I really don't get much opportunities to to view it on the internet. My analysis is mines alone, I assure you.
[ Edited by 9ersLiferInChicago on May 11, 2014 at 5:38 PM ]